Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

Re: [John_Lit] Re: Genesis 1-2 & 4G

Expand Messages
  • Q Bee
    ... Dear Frank, We might also say the same thing when comparing the original creation of Genesis 1 with Genesis 6. It might be the Nephilim who are the race
    Message 1 of 9 , Aug 5, 2004
    • 0 Attachment
      On 8/4/04 9:15 AM, "fmmccoy" <FMMCCOY@...> wrote:

      > The two types of human beings in John 3:6-7 readily relate to the two types
      > of created human beings in Genesis 1-2.
      >
      Dear Frank,

      We might also say the same thing when comparing the original creation of
      Genesis 1 with Genesis 6. It might be the Nephilim who are the race with a
      'spirit' and the men of the original creation are merely 'of the earth'. :-)

      > The thing of flesh readily relates to the man of dust, for both are formed
      > out of earth. The thing of spirit readily relates to the man made in the
      > Image of God for, since God is SPIRIT (John 4:24a), the Image of God is the
      > Spirit and, hence, the man made after the Image of God is a spirit. All
      > this is, IMO, pretty straight-forward and I fail to see how this can be
      > taken as forced or strained.
      >
      It appears that we are dabbling in Greek concepts that find no foundation in
      the Aramaic language. This seems to be the reason that so many rhetorical
      arguments can be constructed within the academic community.

      If, as you say, the passages in John 3, the discourse between Jesus and
      Nicodemus fit 2C, them why does the 2C already contain the concept of God
      breathing life - the spirit- into man in Genesis 2:6? This would make what
      Jesus is conveying in John 3 redundant, would it not?

      > In addition, if the Johannine community interpreted Gen. 1:27 as suggested,
      > then, as that made after the Image of God is a man (anthropos), they must
      > also have believed that God = MAN, Image of God = the Man, and that the
      > thing made after the Image of God = man.
      >
      The phrase 'son of man' was an ordinary phrase that anyone would use when
      speaking of themselves, although, I suppose a female might not use it. There
      is so little recorded about what women might have said that it is left to
      our imagination how a female would phrase self address.

      > Indeed, this might be the case, with Jesus being the Man, the Image of God..
      > So, regarding Jesus, Pilate declares in 19:5, "Behold, the Man!".

      I'm not sure what translation you are working from, but I fail to see a
      capitalized reference in, 'Behold the MAN'. Pilot could have said the same
      thing about any prisoner who appeared before him... i.e., 'look at him',
      either mockingly or otherwise.

      > This, in turn, readily relates to John 3:9-11, "Answered Nicodemus and said,
      > 'How is it possible for these things to happen?' Answered Jesus and said to
      > him, 'You are a teacher of Israel and these things you do not know? Truly,
      > truly, I say to you: That which we know we speak and that which we have seen
      > we testify and our testimony you do not receive.'"
      >
      There is, of course, more than one way that the passage can be interpreted.
      Jesus might have spoken using the 'royal we' or he might have made such a
      reference (assuming that the Greek translation is accurate to Jesus' Aramaic
      words) regarding the thinking of a group such as the Essene, Nazirite,
      Ebionite, etc., belief structure.

      > This also relates to the immediately ensuing John 3:12-13, "If the earthly
      > things I told you and you do not receive, how, if I tell you the heavenly
      > things, will you believe? And no one has ascended into heaven except the
      > one out of heaven having descended, the son of the Man."
      >
      Here again, your version does not match what I find. All the versions in my
      collection read - 'Son of Man' in this instance. Is the original a match to
      these regarding capitals? It does not appear to be so, although I will
      defer to the Greek scholars.

      I'd have to say that the discourse, if it is actually inferring that Jesus
      is a progeny of a god in these passages, it might be as a 'Son of Zeus'
      since the idea being presented would not align itself to Aramaic language
      and thinking.

      > This might even relate to the following John 3:14, "And as Moses lifted up
      > the serpent in the wilderness, so it is necessary for the Son of the MAN to
      > be lifted up, that every one believing in him may have eternal life."

      Now, you have hit upon something here that stands some scrutiny. The
      elevation of Moses to a wisdom figure is personified in his raising up a
      serpent symbol. This symbol is found in many Mediterranean cultures,
      especially as embodied in Sophia/Wisdom who holds up the serpent. Many
      theologians associate Moses lifting up a serpent as precursor to the Christ
      being raised up on the cross; in this there is a connection to the term
      ŒSophia Christ¹. Hippolytus viewed the serpent as the feminine Logos, ³the
      wise Word of Eve².

      There is a connection to the serpent in John the Baptist's statement in John
      1:23 wherein he says, "Make straight the way of the Lord". As this relates
      to the serpent image, when the serpent is 'raised up' it is made straight
      where it had formerly been coiled. If we were speaking from the frame of
      reference in the Indian culture we would be framing the symbolism according
      to Kundalini. The spine of the human that carries all impulses is coiled
      until it is straightened through right practices that lift one to a higher
      spiritual realm of knowing.

      (snip)

      > Elaine, here, you appear to hypothesise that, in the context of John
      > 3:14-15, the symbolism of the lifted up serpent is that of the healing power
      > symbol of patriarchy and Jesus replaces that imagery as the 'Son of
      > Man'=lifted up. Further, this represents a shifting of the symbol of wisdom
      > from the serpent into the Christ.
      >
      Where Moses lifts up a symbol Jesus is the symbol.

      > A basic problem with this hypothesis is that, at least to the best of my
      > knowledge, there is no evidence for a grounding in first century
      > Judeo-Christian thought of the symbolism of the lifted up serpent as that of
      > the healing power symbol of patriarchy.

      What it amounts to, it seems, is that Moses exhibits wisdom and the budding
      patriarchy takes unto itself a symbol that was formerly the feminine form of
      Wisdom.

      Peace,

      Elaine
    • fmmccoy
      ... From: Q Bee To: Sent: Thursday, August 05, 2004 9:19 PM Subject: Re: [John_Lit] Re:
      Message 2 of 9 , Aug 10, 2004
      • 0 Attachment
        ----- Original Message -----
        From: "Q Bee" <artforms@...>
        To: <johannine_literature@yahoogroups.com>
        Sent: Thursday, August 05, 2004 9:19 PM
        Subject: Re: [John_Lit] Re: Genesis 1-2 & 4G


        On 8/4/04 9:15 AM, "fmmccoy" <FMMCCOY@...> wrote:

        >> The thing of flesh readily relates to the man of dust, for both are
        formed out of earth. The thing of spirit readily relates to the man made in
        the Image of God for, since God is SPIRIT (John 4:24a), the Image of God is
        the Spirit and, hence, the man made after the Image of God is a spirit. All
        this is, IMO, pretty straight-forward and I fail to see how this can be
        taken as forced or strained.
        >>

        >It appears that we are dabbling in Greek concepts that find no foundation
        in the Aramaic language. This seems to be the reason that so many
        rhetorical arguments can be constructed within the academic community.
        >
        If, as you say, the passages in John 3, the discourse between Jesus and
        Nicodemus fit 2C, them why does the 2C already contain the concept of God
        breathing life - the spirit- into man in Genesis 2:6? This would make what
        Jesus is conveying in John 3 redundant, would it not?
        >

        Dear Elaine:

        Since John is written in Greek, I think it reasonable to assume that there
        are at least some Greek concepts in John.

        As respects your comment that the 2C has God breathing life, the
        spirit, into man, I suggest that we look at what Philo states in Heres
        (56-57), "For the Maker of all, he says, 'blew into his face the breath of
        life (pnoen), and man became a living soul (psychen)'; just as we are also
        told that he was fashioned after the Image of his Maker. So we have two
        types of men (anthropwn), one that of those who live by reason, the divine
        inbreathing, the other of those who live by blood and the pleasure of the
        flesh. This last is a moulded clod of earth, the other is the faithful
        impress of the divine Image."

        So, what Philo envisons is that we have this sequence: (1) Gen 1:27: the
        first type of man made after the Image of God, (2) Gen. 2:7a: the second
        type of man moulded of earth, (3) Gen. 2:7b: the first type of man made
        after the Image of God.

        What I suggest is that the Johannine community had the same basic
        interpretation of Gen. 1:27 and 2:7, but added a temporal component to the
        interpretation--so that they envisoned these three successive stages for a
        human being: (1) Gen. 1:27: pre-existing as the first type of man, made
        after the Image of God, who is a spirit, (2) Gen 2:7b: becoming incarnate in
        the flesh as the second type of man, moulded of earth, who is flesh and (3)
        Gen 2:7b: being reborn by the divine breath (which they interpreted to be
        the Spirit) as the first type of man, made after the Image of God, who is a
        spirit.

        This is how the above suggestion impacts on 3:6-8:
        3:6 "The thing having been born of the flesh is flesh, and the thing having
        been born of the Spirit is spirit." Here, the thing that is flesh is the
        man moulded of earth in Gen. 2:7a and the thing that is a spirit is the man
        made after the Image of God in Gen. 1:27 and Gen. 2:7b.
        3:7 "Do not marvel that I said to you, 'It is necessary for you to be born
        anwthen (from a higher place/from the start/anew).'" Here, I suggest, we
        have an exhortation on the necessity for you to be a spirit--one who is born
        from a higher place/from the start in the first of the three stages and is
        born anew in the third of the three stages. Compare Thomas 18b-19a,
        "(Jesus said,) 'Blessed is he who will take his place in the beginning: he
        will know the end and will not experience death.' Jesus said, 'Blessed is
        he who came into being before he came into being.'" Blessed is the human
        who is a spirit--for, as a spirit, this human was born from the start and
        has come into being a second time and will eternally live.
        3:8 "The Spirit blows where it wishes and the voice of it you hear, but you
        do not know where it comes from and where it goes.away, so is everyone
        having been born of the Spirit." Here, the one spoken to (i.e., Nicodemus)
        is flesh. One who is flesh hears the voice of the Spirit, but does not know
        about the heaven from which this Spirit comes and returns. Similarly, one
        who is flesh hears one who is a spirit, but does not know about the heaven
        from which this spirit came and to which this spirit will return.

        >> In addition, if the Johannine community interpreted Gen. 1:27 as
        suggested, then, as that made after the Image of God is a man (anthropos),
        they must also have believed that God = MAN, Image of God = the Man, and
        that the thing made after the Image of God = man.
        >>
        (snip)
        >> This also relates to the immediately ensuing John 3:12-13, "If the
        earthly things I told you and you do not receive, how, if I tell you the
        heavenly things, will you believe? And no one has ascended into heaven
        except the one out of heaven having descended, the son of the Man."
        >>

        >Here again, your version does not match what I find. All the versions in
        my collection read - 'Son of Man' in this instance. Is the original a match
        to these regarding capitals? It does not appear to be so, although I will
        defer to the Greek scholars.
        >

        Elaine, this passage appears to relate that only ho huios tou anthrwpou who
        has descended from heaven has ascended into heaven. If so, then ho huios
        tou anthrwpou does not appear to be Jesus--for Jesus has not yet ascended
        into heaven.

        Therefore, since Jesus as ho huious tou anthrwpou in GJohn is standardly
        rendered in English as "the Son of Man", it would appear that "ho huious tou
        anthrwpou" in this passage should not be rendered as "the Son of Man"--even
        though, as you mention, this phrase is universally translated this way.

        But, if this phrase should not be translated as "the Son of Man", then how
        should it be translated?

        Well, it is suggested above that, in this part of GJohn, it is a spirit/man
        who pre-exists in heaven, descends to become incarnate as flesh and then, at
        some point after being reborn again, ascends into the heaven from whence it
        came. Further, such a spirit/man is a son of the Man in the sense of being
        a copy of this Image of God. Therefore, I suggest, this phrase ought to be
        translated as "the son of the Man".

        In this case, the main point of 3:13 is that the only one who ascends into
        heaven is a spirit/man who has, earlier, descended from heaven--the obvious
        implication being that no one who, like Nicodemus, is flesh has ever
        ascended into heaven.

        If so, then 1:14a ("And the Logos became flesh") is a declaration that the
        Logos, the Man, became mortal, incapable of ascending back into
        heaven. Further, in this case, Jesus, in order to re-gain his immortality,
        would have needed to be reborn a second time as the Man.

        So, I suggest, in Johannine thought, the descent of the Spirit to Jesus
        while he was being baptized in water by John was his rebirth as the Man by
        this Spirit.

        Compare GPhilip 70-71, "Jesus revealed [himself at the] Jordan: it was the
        [fullness of the kingdom] of heaven. He who [was begotten before everything
        was begotten anew. He [who was] once [anointed] was anointed anew. He who
        was redeemed in turn redeemed (others)."

        The final comment in this passage from GPhilip appears to be based on the
        idea that, by being born anew into eternal life by the Spirit while being
        baptized in the Jordan, Jesus set a precedent that established a new rite in
        which one who is a follower of him will, while being baptized by water, be
        reborn into eternal life by the Spirit.

        This, in turn, might relate to John 3:5: which speaks of the need to be
        reborn of water and Spirit. Here, I suggest, we have a reference to the
        early Christian rite of baptism as understood by the Johannine commnunity: a
        rite established by Jesus in which, as he was born for the second time as
        the Man by the Spirit while being baptized by water, so one who is a
        follower of him will be born for a second time, as a spirit/man by the
        Spirit while being baptized by water.

        >I'd have to say that the discourse, if it is actually inferring that Jesus
        is a progeny of a god in these passages, it might be as a 'Son of Zeus'
        since the idea being presented would not align itself to Aramaic language
        and thinking.
        >

        Well, Zeus fathered sons through women. So, if there is a sense in which
        God is like Zeus in Johannine thought, then it is likely that, in Johannine
        thought, the Son, who is the Man, also has a mother. Indeed, if, as
        suggested above, the Johannine community understood that this Man was reborn
        by the Spirit while being baptized by John, then they would have understood
        the Spirit to be the Mother of this Man.

        Elaine, compare Thomas 101c, "For My mother [gave me falsehood], but [My]
        true [Mother] gave me life." By one mother, Jesus was born as mortal thing
        of flesh, but by another Mother, the Spirit, he was (re-)born as the
        immortal Man.

        Also compare this passage, preserved by Jerome, from the now-lost Gospel
        According to the Hebrews, "When the Lord ascended from the water, the whole
        fount of the Holy Spirit descended and rested upon him, and said to him, 'My
        son, in all the prophets I was waiting for you, that you might come, and
        that I might rest in you. For you are my rest; and you are my firsborn son,
        who reigns forever.'"

        That the Spirit descends and rests upon Jesus in this passage evokes John
        1:31, where John the Baptist declares that he saw the Spirit descending and
        remaining upon Jesus. If this descent of the Spirit to rest upon Jesus is,
        in fact, an allusion to John 1:31, then this passage from Hebrews might be
        based on Johannine thought--in which case the Johannine community believed
        that the Spirit acted as the Mother of Jesus during his baptism by John.

        Regards,

        Frank McCoy
        1809 N. English Apt. 15
        Maplewood, MN USA 55109
      • fmmccoy
        ... From: Q Bee To: Sent: Thursday, August 05, 2004 9:19 PM Subject: Re: [John_Lit] Re:
        Message 3 of 9 , Aug 10, 2004
        • 0 Attachment
          ----- Original Message -----
          From: "Q Bee" <artforms@...>
          To: <johannine_literature@yahoogroups.com>
          Sent: Thursday, August 05, 2004 9:19 PM
          Subject: Re: [John_Lit] Re: Genesis 1-2 & 4G


          On 8/4/04 9:15 AM, "fmmccoy" <FMMCCOY@...> wrote:

          >> Indeed, this might be the case, with Jesus being the Man, the Image of
          God.. So, regarding Jesus, Pilate declares in 19:5, "Behold, the Man!".
          >>

          >I'm not sure what translation you are working from, but I fail to see a
          capitalized reference in, 'Behold the MAN'. Pilot could have said the same
          thing about any prisoner who appeared before him... i.e., 'look at him',
          either mockingly or otherwise.
          >

          Dear Elaine:

          As respects this declaration by Pilate, Raymond E. Brown states in The
          Gospel According to John (p. 876), "As a possible background for John's
          usage, Meeks points to Zech vi 12: '*Behold a man* (LXX: aner) whose name is
          the Branch....he shall build the temple of the Lord.' 'The Branch' came to
          be understood messianically; and in the MT of Zechariah the second part of
          the verse recalls the oracle of Nathan to David: 'He shall build a house for
          my name' (II San vii.13)."

          I think this is on the right track. Because Pilate makes the proclamation,
          "Behold the man!", while Jesus stands before him with a crown of thorns and
          a royal robe of (Tyrian) purple, he is referring to Jesus as a royal figure:
          and the Branch is one of the titles of the Davidic Messiah in the DSS. So,
          I think that Pilate's statement alludes to Zech 6:12--with one implication
          being that Jesus is this man who is the Branch (LXX: Anatole) and that he
          is, as such, the Davidic Messiah--the legitimate heir to David's throne.

          However, this does not explain why Pilate's statement is "Idou ho
          anthrwpos", while the LXX version of Zech 6:12 begins with,. "Idou aner".

          The reason for this discrepency, I suggest, is that the author of John was
          familiar with the beginning of Zech 6:12 as rendered by Philo in Conf (62),
          "Idou anthrwpos". In this case, Pilate is alluding to Zech 6:12 not as
          rendered by the LXX but as rendered by Philo in Conf (62).

          While there are a number of reasons why the author of John might have known
          Zech 6:12 as rendered by Philo in Conf (62), the most straight-forward one
          is that this person had read Conf and, so, knew both Philo's rendering of
          Zech 6:12 and his interpretation of Zech 6:12..

          In this regard, it is significant that Philo goes on to identify this
          anthrwpos of Zech 6:12 , as being the Logos as the Image of God, stating
          (Ibid., 62-63), "But if you suppose that it (i.e., this anthrwpos of Zech.
          6:12) is that Incorporeal one who differs not a whit from the divine image
          (i.e., who is the Logos, the Image of God), you will agree that the name of
          "Anatole" assigned to him (in Zech. 6:12) quite truly describes him.

          So, I suggest, the author of John has Pilate allude to Zech. 6:12 as
          rendered by Philo in Conf (62) in order to identify Jesus as being the
          Logos: the Man who is the Image of God.

          If so, then the correct way to translate Pilate's statement is, "Behold the
          Man!"

          This is not to deny that Pilate's statement identifies Jesus as being the
          Branch--the Davidic Messiah. Rather, I suggest, both levels of meaning are
          present in Pilate's statement--making it, fully understood, the
          identification of Jesus as being the Logos incarnate on earth as the Davidic
          Messiah.

          If so, then Pilate's statement also alludes back to John 1:14a, "And the
          Logos became flesh and eskenwsen (tented) among us." That is to say, the
          Logos became flesh as the skene (tent) of David--the Davidic Messiah. See
          4Q174, "He is the Branch of David who shall arise with the the Interpreter
          of the Law [to rule] in Zion [at the end] of time. As it is written, 'I
          will raise up the tent of David that is fallen' (Amos ix, 11). That is to
          say, the fallen *tent of David* is he who shall arise to save Israel."


          Regards,

          Frank McCoy
          1809 N. English Apt. 15
          Maplewood, MN USA 55109
        • Q Bee
          On 8/10/04 12:37 PM, fmmccoy wrote: ... Frank, would you point out the passage that tells of the baptism of Jesus? Peace, Elaine
          Message 4 of 9 , Aug 10, 2004
          • 0 Attachment
            On 8/10/04 12:37 PM, "fmmccoy" <FMMCCOY@...> wrote:

            Frank wrote:

            > So, I suggest, in Johannine thought, the descent of the Spirit to Jesus
            > while he was being baptized in water by John was his rebirth as the Man by
            > this Spirit.

            Frank, would you point out the passage that tells of the baptism of Jesus?

            Peace,

            Elaine
          • Q Bee
            On 8/10/04 12:37 PM, fmmccoy wrote: (snip) ... Dear Frank, ISTM that this scenario does not hold water. What I see in the scenario
            Message 5 of 9 , Aug 11, 2004
            • 0 Attachment
              On 8/10/04 12:37 PM, "fmmccoy" <FMMCCOY@...> wrote:

              (snip)

              Frank wrote:

              > So, what Philo envisons is that we have this sequence: (1) Gen 1:27: the
              > first type of man made after the Image of God, (2) Gen. 2:7a: the second
              > type of man moulded of earth, (3) Gen. 2:7b: the first type of man made
              > after the Image of God.
              >
              > What I suggest is that the Johannine community had the same basic
              > interpretation of Gen. 1:27 and 2:7, but added a temporal component to the
              > interpretation--so that they envisoned these three successive stages for a
              > human being: (1) Gen. 1:27: pre-existing as the first type of man, made
              > after the Image of God, who is a spirit, (2) Gen 2:7b: becoming incarnate in
              > the flesh as the second type of man, moulded of earth, who is flesh and (3)
              > Gen 2:7b: being reborn by the divine breath (which they interpreted to be
              > the Spirit) as the first type of man, made after the Image of God, who is a
              > spirit.
              >
              Dear Frank,

              ISTM that this scenario does not hold water. What I see in the scenario is
              successive stages in one type of humanity. God created humanity as 'spirit'
              which then is 'enfleshed'. Perhaps humanity is created in the 'mind of God'
              and then becomes tangible reality in the flesh with the breath of God making
              the corporeal creation animate. Both of these initial stages of humanity
              are already ensouled beings. But Jesus provides the way for life to become
              eternal through his initiation process: the individual chooses eternal life
              through fiat and takes the step into the initiation process by asking to be
              baptized. The Spirit responds by imparting its gifts upon the individual.

              You wrote:

              > Blessed is the human
              > who is a spirit--for, as a spirit, this human was born from the start and
              > has come into being a second time and will eternally live.
              > 3:8 "The Spirit blows where it wishes and the voice of it you hear, but you
              > do not know where it comes from and where it goes.away, so is everyone
              > having been born of the Spirit."

              So, according to your assessment, the God of Israel is uneven in its gifts
              and creates some who are lesser and some who are more - animal humans and
              humans with a living spirit. This fits nicely into a scenario of a god of
              the 'chosen ones'. Maybe those created without souls can be taken advantage
              of and treated as lesser. Then the person who treats others unequally is
              justified in their actions. After all, it is God's fault that these
              creatures are 'less' and there is no responsibility on the one who is
              'more'.

              If one is of the understanding that God is omnipotent and is aware of
              everything, even before it happens, then one could rightly contend that the
              Creator knew full well what he was doing when he created the serpent, man,
              and woman, and in fact 'wrote' the drama of 'the fall' for his own
              amusement. And, if the 'opening of one's eyes' is initiatory, then the 2nd
              tale of Genesis is the Hebrew equivalent of the tale of Prometheus.



              >>> In addition, if the Johannine community interpreted Gen. 1:27 as
              > suggested, then, as that made after the Image of God is a man (anthropos),
              > they must also have believed that God = MAN, Image of God = the Man, and
              > that the thing made after the Image of God = man.

              I do not find capitals in the Greek that divides these senses of 'man'. Do
              I have a bad edition?

              (snip)

              > Therefore, since Jesus as ho huious tou anthrwpou in GJohn is standardly
              > rendered in English as "the Son of Man", it would appear that "ho huious tou
              > anthrwpou" in this passage should not be rendered as "the Son of Man"--even
              > though, as you mention, this phrase is universally translated this way.
              >
              (snip)
              >
              > In this case, the main point of 3:13 is that the only one who ascends into
              > heaven is a spirit/man who has, earlier, descended from heaven--the obvious
              > implication being that no one who, like Nicodemus, is flesh has ever
              > ascended into heaven.
              >
              Yet, in Aramaic there is no sense of an outward heaven. What we are talking
              about, it would seem, is an ascent of the spirit. The 'flesh' that has not
              ascended is the human who is grounded in the lower self.

              It would appear that this passage in 4G is a polemic based on the variance
              between the Gospel of Thomas' presentation and 4G's theology which lays out
              the way as through Jesus' death on the cross.

              > If so, then 1:14a ("And the Logos became flesh") is a declaration that the
              > Logos, the Man, became mortal, incapable of ascending back into
              > heaven. Further, in this case, Jesus, in order to re-gain his immortality,
              > would have needed to be reborn a second time as the Man.
              >
              > So, I suggest, in Johannine thought, the descent of the Spirit to Jesus
              > while he was being baptized in water by John was his rebirth as the Man by
              > this Spirit.
              >
              Uh, you really need to read John 1:29-34 again. There is no baptism of
              Jesus mentioned in it.

              Peace,

              Elaine
            • Q Bee
              On 8/10/04 12:37 PM, fmmccoy wrote: ... Dear Frank, Do I have this right? You and Brown are contending that the ruthless Roman
              Message 6 of 9 , Aug 11, 2004
              • 0 Attachment
                On 8/10/04 12:37 PM, "fmmccoy" <FMMCCOY@...> wrote:

                Frank wrote:

                > Dear Elaine:
                >
                > As respects this declaration by Pilate, Raymond E. Brown states in The
                > Gospel According to John (p. 876), "As a possible background for John's
                > usage, Meeks points to Zech vi 12: '*Behold a man* (LXX: aner) whose name is
                > the Branch....he shall build the temple of the Lord.' 'The Branch' came to
                > be understood messianically; and in the MT of Zechariah the second part of
                > the verse recalls the oracle of Nathan to David: 'He shall build a house for
                > my name' (II San vii.13)."
                >
                > I think this is on the right track. Because Pilate makes the proclamation,
                > "Behold the man!", while Jesus stands before him with a crown of thorns and
                > a royal robe of (Tyrian) purple, he is referring to Jesus as a royal figure:
                > and the Branch is one of the titles of the Davidic Messiah in the DSS. So,
                > I think that Pilate's statement alludes to Zech 6:12--with one implication
                > being that Jesus is this man who is the Branch (LXX: Anatole) and that he
                > is, as such, the Davidic Messiah--the legitimate heir to David's throne.
                >
                Dear Frank,

                Do I have this right? You and Brown are contending that the ruthless Roman
                governor, Pilot, a non-Jew, is engaged in making scriptural references that
                evidences his acuity with the material in Zechariah?

                I am willing to entertain the possibility of such an idea in the mind of the
                author of 4G, but to base a whole string of contentions upon that
                speculation is another story. At some point in history some other scholar
                will likely take the string of contentions and build upon it until the
                original material is unrecognizable.

                > However, this does not explain why Pilate's statement is "Idou ho
                > anthrwpos", while the LXX version of Zech 6:12 begins with,. "Idou aner".
                >
                > The reason for this discrepency, I suggest, is that the author of John was
                > familiar with the beginning of Zech 6:12 as rendered by Philo in Conf (62),
                > "Idou anthrwpos". In this case, Pilate is alluding to Zech 6:12 not as
                > rendered by the LXX but as rendered by Philo in Conf (62).
                >
                This is so highly speculative that there is no way to respond. It proposes
                that the author of 4G is familiar with several sources which he implants in
                the dialog of a non-Jew. There is no way to know what the author had access
                to or the intention of the phrase, 'Behold the man'.

                Now, I am seeing in this that modern scholarship is willing to distort the
                context of the original text by implanting upper case letters where none had
                existed. Is this not overlaying a brand of speculative theology on the
                English speaking public? How can this be justified? I thought it was
                anathema to change the meaning of scripture.

                Peace,

                Elaine
              Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.